Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Bill 2019 introduced in Rajya Sabha

The Union government has tabled the Arbitration and Conciliation (Amendment) Bill 2019 in Rajya Sabha.

Features of the Bill

  • It seeks to make India a hub of domestic and global arbitration for settling commercial disputes.
  • The bill seeks to provide for a robust mechanism to deal with institutional disputes and ensures accountability of the arbitrator.
  • The bill provides for setting up of Arbitration Council of India (ACI) to lay down standards, make arbitration process more friendly and cost-effective, and ensure timely disposal of cases.
  • The ACI would be responsible for framing rules on how institutions would be graded, norms to be followed, monitoring of quality and performance.
  • The bill amends the Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996 to allow the appointment of arbitrators by “arbitral institutions” designated by the Supreme Court or a high court rather than Supreme Court or a high court themselves.
  • For the timely resolution of disputes, it provides for that the statement of claim and defence within a period of six months from the date the arbitrator receives the notice of appointment.

There has been a manifold increase in the number of Commercial disputes have due to globalisation, industrialisation and liberalisation. A large number of these arbitration cases are conducted in countries such as Singapore, the UK and France. The bill is an attempt to make India a hub of domestic and global arbitration.

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